Campesino clocks fast time
CAMPESINO confirmed his status as one of the country's top sprinters with a facile victory in the season's first grade one race, the $1.2 million Eileen Cliggott Memorial Trophy over 1300 metres, at Caymanas Park yesterday.
Toting topweight of 57.0kg with Robert Halledeen riding for 14-time champion trainer Philip Feanny and popular owner Howard Hamilton, CAMPESINO, running as the 4-5 favourite in a field of five, chased the leader, SIR BUDGET, for most of the way before going by entering the straight.
Thereafter, it was smooth sailing as he moved away to win by 33/4 lengths from 8-5 second favourite BRAWN and FRANFIELD in the smart time of 1:17.3 JAMAI RAJA (lame) was declared a late non-starter.
This was CAMPESINO's second consecutive win and his third from his last four starts. The consistent seven-year-old gelding by Campadre out of Yaella had previously won the St. Catherine Cup open allowance feature over 1100 metres on January 7 and the prestigious Glen Mills O.J. Caribbean Sprint Championship over 1200 metes on November 12, ahead of his more fancied stable-companion BUZZ NIGHTMARE.
On a day when O&S Tack Room provided product prizes, a bag of Alfalfa Cubes feed to the winning owner of each race, trainer FItzroy Glispie highlighted the 11-race programme with three winners. These were BIRD CATCHER (2-1), who humbled the highly-thought-of three-year-old colt FEARLESS SAMURAI (1-9 favourite) in the opening race over a mile, 3-5 favourite FRANCIA'S PRIDE in the second and the veteran campaigner TIMEFORARMS (2-1), who produced a tremendous late run on the rails to win the overnight allowance race over 1500 metres in a driving finish.
SHARED RIDING HONOURS
Apprentice Anthony Thomas, who rode both TIMEFORARMS and FRANCIA'S PRIDE, shared the riding honours with Halledeen, who also rode two winners.
Meanwhile, CTL presented cash awards to the winners and runners-up in the 2016 overall monthly winners in each category - Garth Samuels and Oneil Hinds (owners), Wayne DaCosta, Anthony Nunes (trainers), Bebeto Harvey (jockey), Sterling Smith, Ferron Hall (grooms). Racing continues on Wednesday.